As work continues on the future Rainy Lake Square here, evening entertainment has been lined up to draw people there once it opens in late August.
Geoff Gillon, client services manager with the Rainy River Future Development Corp., told council during its regular meeting Monday night that the RRFDC has applied successfully to “Ontario 150" to stage an entertainment series—the "Rainy Lake 150 Series”— there later this summer.
The RRFDC has scheduled five free Thursday evening concerts in the square to celebrate its opening, as well as to get the public into the habit of going there for fun community events.
Local band Wild Horses will take the stage Aug. 24, followed by top 40 act Pop Vegas on Aug. 31 (the grand opening of Rainy Lake Square).
Daylin James will be bring his “Elvis Show” there Sept. 7, followed by folk-jazz artist Little Miss Higgins on Sept. 14.
Various northern artists then will come together for a show slated for Sept. 21.
More information, such as exact start times, will be promoted closer to the concert dates.
The series also is being supported through Ontario Arts grant monies and sponsorship from Tbaytel.
The RRFDC also will encourage buskers to play in the square after it opens, livening up the atmosphere there.
It also has purchased a giant blow-up movie screen, projector, and sound system in order to show family movies in the square in September.
Groups which would like to organize at the Rainy Lake Square when it is completed are urged to call 274-9621 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
On the vendor front, the RRFDC has attended markets in the community and reached out to vendors across the north to develop the “market” aspect of the square, as well.
In addition to the current Thursday market in downtown Fort Frances, the plan is for a Saturday morning one to be offered at the square.
The first Saturday market date is set for Sept. 9.
For details on becoming a vendor at the Saturday market, call 274-9621 or e-mail email@example.com
The RRFDC will be providing tables and tents to vendors.
A marketing plan also has been created, with the RRFDC having applied for $20,000 in funding over two years to help accomplish this.
Light-weight barricades have been purchased for the market area to contain events.
As well, a new highway sign promoting the square has been purchased for the east entrance to the community (one already has been up in the west end).
Meanwhile, the town's Economic Development Advisory Committee has begun to look at what opportunities might arise if the mill here ever was demolished.
The RRFDC has made inquiries with various ministries and is putting together a proposal to subsidize large-scale land use planning activity that would take place if demolition were to be take place.
Gillon also said Resolute recently gave the RRFDC a list of its buildings that may or may not be up for sale.
“There are some buildings that they have that we could make good use of,” he noted.
These buildings are being “marketed appropriately” to external parties who have made inquiries.